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Seattle just became the largest city in the country with a hands-off policy for people who consume natural psychedelics. Yesterday the city council unanimously approved a resolution that says “the investigation, arrest, and prosecution of anyone engaging in entheogen-related activities should be among The City of Seattle’s lowest enforcement priorities.” It urges the Seattle Police Department to “move toward the formal codification and adoption of that practice as departmental policy.”
The new policy, which is similar to the one approved by Washington, D.C., voters last November, applies to “any living, fresh, dried, or processed plant or fungal material, including teas or powders, that may contain currently scheduled or analog psychoactive indolamines, tryptamines, or phenethylamines, including, but not limited to, psilocybin mushrooms, ayahuasca tea, mescaline, and iboga.” It covers “cultivation” and “sharing” of such “entheogens” as well as possession, which already was covered by a general city policy of refraining from arresting drug users.
Seattle joins several other U.S. cities in urging tolerance of psychedelic use. In 2019, Denver voters approved a groundbreaking initiative that made adult possession of psilocybin the city’s lowest law enforcement priority and prohibited the use of public money to pursue such cases. Last year, the city councils of Ann Arbor, Michigan; Oakland, California; and Santa Cruz, California, enacted similar measures.
Oregon voters went further last November by passing a ballot initiative aimed at establishing state-licensed “psilocybin service centers” where adults can legally consume the drug under the supervision of a “facilitator” after completing a “preparation session.” The initiative says regulators “may not require a client to be diagnosed with or have any particular medical condition as a condition [of] being provided psilocybin services.” Another Oregon ballot initiative approved in November decriminalized low-level possession of drugs, including psilocybin and other psychedelics.
Last February, the Washington Supreme Court effectively decriminalized simple drug possession by overturning a law that made possession a felony without any evidence of intent or knowledge. The legislature responded by approving a new law that included a mens rea requirement. That law also changed simple possession of a controlled substance from a Class C felony, punishable by up to five years in prison and a maximum fine of $10,000, to a gross misdemeanor, which carries a maximum penalty of a year in jail and a $1,000 fine.
[VIDEO] Actress Jurnee Smollett Plays Race Card in Call to ‘Free Jussie’ — ‘Stop Locking Up Our People’
Jussie Smollett’s sister, actress Jurnee Smollett, is calling for Cook County to “#FreeJussie” following her brother’s sentencing Thursday, telling her followers they should advocate for his release — because of disparate incarceration between black and white Americans — even if they believe he is guilty.
Jurnee Smollett’s call for Cook County to “#FreeJussie” comes after her brother was sentenced to 150 days in jail for staging a fake hate crime against himself in January 2019.
“Black Americans are incarcerated in state prisons at nearly five times the rate of White Americans,” she wrote in her Instagram caption. “Jussie is innocent. And… you don’t have to believe in his innocence to believe he should be free.”
The actress included the hashtags “Free Jussie” and “Stop Locking Up Our People.”
In January 2019, Smollett had claimed he was physically attacked by two men wearing red hats who put a rope around his neck, poured bleach on him, and shouted racial and homophobic slurs at him, before eventually yelling, “This is MAGA country!” in reference to former President Donald Trump’s campaign slogan.
On Thursday, Judge James Linn sentenced Smollett to 150 days in jail, 30 months of probation, restitution of $120,106, and a fine of $25,000.
“You’re just a charlatan, pretending to be a victim of a hate crime,” Judge Linn told Smollett during Thursday’s sentencing, adding that the actor’s “very name has become an adverb for ‘lying.’”
“Your performance on the witness stand, this can only be described as pure perjury,” the judge added. “You committed hour upon hour upon hour of pure perjury.”
Smollett is now a convicted felon.
The actor repeatedly shouted, “I am not suicidal, and I am innocent” as he was being hauled off to jail on Thursday.
On Saturday, Smollett’s brother Jocqui Smollett reported that the actor has been placed in a psych ward at the Cook County jail.
Wisconsin Waiter Shot in the Face by Two Women After Forgetting Their Hamburger
Two women in Wisconsin have been charged with first-degree intentional homicide after shooting a restaurant server in the face after he forgot to bring one of the hamburgers they ordered.
Bryanna Johnson and Breanta Johnson, both 20 years old, were in a group of four at a George Webb restaurant in Wauwatosa. This group was being “impatient and rude”, according to one of the restaurant staff members.
One of the women in the group was even asked to leave, which she did but only for a brief period of time before returning to the establishment. Later, while the group of women was up by the register, one of them punched their 26-year-old server in the face, then proceeded to pull out a handgun and shot the victim in the face while he was lying on the ground.
The victim, who was, fortunately, able to survive the gunshot wound, told the police that the altercation was a result of the women’s order missing a hamburger. Apparently, that’s what this man’s life was worth to these women. A single hamburger.
Bryanna and Breanta Johnson’s bond is set at $100,000 and are scheduled to appear in court for preliminary hearings on February 15.
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